The cyber law of India prescribes cyber law due diligence and Internet intermediary liability of India. E-commerce websites are required to follow cyber law due diligence and Internet intermediary in India. However, a majority of e-commerce websites in India are not complying with these requirements. In fact, e-commerce websites frauds, offences and crimes in India have increased significantly. E-commerce websites must be regulated in India and stringent punishment must be prescribed for violating e-commerce laws of India.
In one such incidence that occurred at the 99Acres.com website, a property broker, Vishal D’souza, was selling a flat for three crores in Bombay’s Hindu Colony, Dadar. He posted the following advertisement on the Real estate site 99Acres.com. “Excellent brand new 2BHK fully furnished flat with cross ventilation, natural light. Cosmopolitan society, no Muslims, with car parking on immediate sale, fifth floor interested please call”.
Finding it offensive, a lawyer Shehzad Poonawala, filed a complaint before the National Commission for Minorities. The property broker has since modified the entry and the website has issued a statement claiming that “We are a platform or an intermediary and as per industry practice it is our responsibility to remove any illegal content from our site after it is brought to our notice. We are also examining other listings on the site for any such objectionable content. We are in the process of putting in place checks and processes to prevent the recurrence of such acts. We are deeply embarrassed that our site was misused in this manner”.
Fortunately, no compliant was filed under the Information Technology Act, 2000 against 99Acres.com website/ Vishal D’souza for violation of its provisions otherwise there could have been a big problem. Such a complaint is still possible if the website fails to observe cyber law due diligence and Internet intermediary obligations for the present case as well as for future postings at the website.